The lotus flower represents Vietnam. It is the national flower. Why was it chosen as a national symbol? The lotus is a special flower. It always grows in the mud of ponds or lakes. It has a fragrant smell, and its flower is very beautiful. Many people love this flower for its beauty and utility.

People can use the lotus flower for many things. Firstly, lotus’s seeds are used for cooking, especially for desserts, and eating raw as a fruit. Secondly, the stems can be dried to make a fragrant herbal tea. This is called Tisane. It is used for helping people to fall asleep easily. Thirdly, lotus leaves are used as a wrap for food. Lotus leaves not only protect the food but also can make food more fragrant and delicious.  Lotus roots are also edible. They are often used as a salad ingredient in Vietnamese cuisine. Eating lotus roots is also good for our health. Many scientists found that lotus roots are rich in vitamin C, potassium, thiamin, and vitamin B6, yet very low in saturated fat. Finally, lotus flowers are used for decorating, with the petals used as a garnish.

The lotus flower is also a religious symbol. In Buddhism, the lotus flower has been a divine symbol. The lotus flower has been used as a platform for Buddha to stand when he was born, and sit when he meditated. And the lotus flower has also been a platform for the Goddess to stand on too.

Additionally, the lotus flower has been used as a theme to decorate for many Vietnamese handicraft products such as: Vietnamese folk painting, traditional pottery, and embroidery.  The lotus flower has been depicted in these crafts and works of art as a good and lucky flower.

And now, the lotus flower has become a symbol of Vietnamese tourism. The five colorful lotus petals and the slogan “Vietnam – Timeless Charm” have been selected as the symbol and slogan of Vietnam tourism from 2012 – 2015. According to the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism’s explanation, the lotus was chosen because it symbolizes nobility and the beauty of Vietnam; the country country, it’s soul and it’s people. With the five colorful petals, the new logo suggests interesting experiences to be had by tourists visiting Vietnam.

Each colorful petal has a different meaning. The blue petal symbolizes the beach and island tourism. The green petal symbolizes ecotourism. The orange petal symbolizes cultural and historical tourism. The violet petal symbolizes exploration and adventure. And the pink petal symbolizes the dynamic hospitality of the Vietnamese people.

In Chinese culture, Confucian scholar Zhou Dunyi wrote: “I love the lotus, because while growing from the mud, it is unstained.” And Vietnamese people also share this belief. They love the lotus because it is unstained.

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